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Between thick and thin: responding to the crisis of moral education

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This article presents a moral orientation that can serve as a commonly shared foundation for developing moral consciousness in (postmodern) multicultural democratic societies. To this end, I distinguish between two prevailing generic views of moral education—‘thin’ and ‘thick’—and claim that the tensions between them contribute to the sense of crisis of moral education (and public schooling in general). I begin by showing these tensions through a discussion of representatives of each side of the thin–thick dichotomy, as well as through Lickona’s integrative account. After discussing the complications of each view, I present PARTS—Postconventional Authentic Relation-to-Self—as a normative perspective that is able to reconcile the two generic views. I show the merits of PARTS by discussing the notions of moral judgement and motivation.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel

Publication date: 01 June 2012

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